KUCHING: Dato Sri Mahmud Abu Bekir Taib has been tipped to replace his younger brother Dato Sri Sulaiman Abdul Rahman Taib for the Kota Samarahan parliamentary seat in the coming general election.
Mahmud, the eldest son of Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, added that he has always been interested an the state’s politics.
“I am always interested in Sarawak politics but no one has yet called me,” Mahmud Abu Bekir told the media at his father’s joint Hari Raya open house held at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here yesterday.
However, he disclosed that his father had not mentioned anything about him replacing his brother in the coming election yet.
“I think he has someone in mind but I don’t know who,” said Mahmud Abu Bekir who is a corporate figure.
Mahmud Abu Bekir disclosed that he has been a member of PBB Kuching since 19 years old.
Sulaiman also resigned from his post as a deputy tourism minister after the demise of his mother Puan Sri Laila Taib on April 29, 2009.
Last week, PBB senior vice-president Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hassan revealed that Sulaiman would not be defending his seat in the coming parliamentary election.
He added that PBB, the biggest Barisan Nasional (BN) component in the state, would be fielding some new faces in the party’s line-up to face the 13th general election.
Awang Tengah added that the party was constantly evaluating the chances of all potential candidates, including assessing the incumbents to determine who should be retained or dropped.
“There will certainly be some changes to our candidate line-up in the next general election where there will be few new faces. Assessment is being done incessantly but things will be finalised when the right time comes,” said Awang Tengah after flagging off the Police Community Programme convoy at the State Contingent Police Headquarters here recently.
According to Awang Tengah, Sulaiman, who was fielded in Kota Samarahan in the 2008 election to replace his father and won the seat, had indicated that he would not be seeking re-election.
In the 2008 general election Sarawak BN won 30 out of the 31 seats at stake, losing only Bandar Kuching to Democratic Action Party (DAP) state secretary Chong Chieng Jen
But last year the DAP gained control of another seat when it won the Sibu by-election through its state chairman Wong Ho Leng.
Of the 31 parliamentary seats in the state, PBB holds 14, SUPP (seven), Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS), (six) and Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP) (four). The current parliament term expires about 18 months from now but speculations were rife that it could be as early as November this year.